Integrate Zendesk and Salesforce

Integrating Zendesk and Salesforce is a strategic move that can significantly enhance customer service and sales operations. This post will guide you through the what, why, and how of integrating these two powerful platforms, focusing on the integration process using Workato.

Understanding Zendesk and Salesforce

Before delving into integration, let’s clarify what Zendesk and Salesforce are.

What Is Zendesk?

Zendesk is a versatile, cloud-based customer service platform widely used by businesses of all sizes. Here are some key features:

  • Ticketing system: Centralizes customer queries from various channels into an efficient ticketing process.
  • Live chat and messaging: Facilitates real-time customer interactions to enhance engagement.
  • Knowledge-base management: Allows businesses to create and manage a self-service customer information repository.

In addition to these core functions, Zendesk offers significant customization to align with specific business needs. It scales effortlessly with the growth of a business, ensuring consistent customer service quality regardless of size. Integration capabilities with various platforms, including CRMs like Salesforce, make it a versatile choice for a comprehensive tech stack.

What Is Salesforce?

Salesforce is a leading customer relationship management (CRM) platform that serves businesses of all sizes. It’s recognized for its comprehensive approach to managing sales, marketing, and customer service operations. 

Following are some of the critical aspects of Salesforce:

  • Sales management: Streamlines the entire sales process, from lead generation to closing deals, and efficiently manages customer data.
  • Marketing automation: Provides tools for creating and managing marketing campaigns, tracking customer engagement, and generating leads.
  • Customer service management: Facilitates improved customer support and service through various channels, enhancing overall customer satisfaction.

Salesforce is renowned for its adaptability and allows businesses to customize it according to their unique requirements. Its scalability ensures it can grow with a business, adapting to changing needs. Integration with various applications, including Zendesk, enhances its functionality, making it a central piece in many business operations.

Why Integrate Zendesk and Salesforce?

Integrating Zendesk and Salesforce is a strategic decision that benefits businesses aiming to optimize customer relationship management and support services. Combining these two powerful platforms creates a synergy that enhances overall operational efficiency and customer experience. 

Streamlined Customer Data Management

By integrating Zendesk and Salesforce, businesses can centralize their customer data, eliminating the need to juggle between multiple systems. This unified approach can provide:

  • Enhanced data accessibility: Sales and support teams gain immediate access to customer interactions and history, leading to more informed communications.
  • Reduced data redundancy: With centralized data, the likelihood of duplicating efforts or mismanaging customer information is significantly minimized.

Improved Response Times and Service Quality

The integration results in quicker, more efficient customer service responses, including these key advantages:

  • Faster resolution of customer issues: Support teams can access customer history and ongoing sales processes to tailor their responses more effectively.
  • Consistency in customer communication: Ensuring that all teams are on the same page regarding customer interactions promotes consistency and quality communication.

Enhanced Collaboration between Sales and Support Teams

Integrating Zendesk and Salesforce fosters a collaborative environment between sales and support teams:

  • Shared insights: Sales can inform the support team about potential upsell opportunities or customer preferences, while support can provide feedback on customer issues and satisfaction levels.
  • Coordinated efforts: A shared view of customer data helps align sales and support strategies, ensuring a cohesive approach to customer engagement.

Better Customer Insights and Personalization

The combined data from both platforms will give deeper insights into customer behavior and preferences, which is crucial to improve targeting and personalization:

  • Personalized marketing and sales efforts: Tailor marketing campaigns and sales pitches based on comprehensive customer data.
  • Improved customer segmentation: Segment customers more effectively based on their interactions and history across sales and support.

Increased Operational Efficiency

Integrating Zendesk and Salesforce streamlines various operational processes as well:

  • Reduced manual data entry: Automate the flow of information between the two systems, reducing manual entry and the risk of errors.
  • More informed decision making: Utilize combined data for strategic customer support and sales planning decision-making.

Scalability and Flexibility

As your business grows, the integration scales to your needs, with these results:

  • Adaptability to changing business requirements: Easily modify the integration to suit evolving business strategies and customer demands.
  • Scalable solutions for growing customer bases: Manage increasing volumes of customer data and interactions efficiently.

Now let’s explore how we can integrate Zendesk and Salesforce with Workato.

Step-by-Step Guide to Integrating Zendesk and Salesforce Using Workato

Integrating Zendesk with Salesforce via Workato can significantly streamline your customer service and sales operations. This step-by-step guide will take you through the entire process, ensuring a smooth and effective integration.


Before you begin, ensure you have the following:

  1. Active accounts: Ensure you have active Zendesk, Salesforce, and Workato accounts.
  2. Admin access: You’ll need administrative privileges in both Zendesk and Salesforce to set up the integration.
  3. Familiarity with both platforms: A basic understanding of how Zendesk and Salesforce operate will help you configure the integration more effectively.

Step 1: Setting Up Workato

First, set up your Workato environment:

  1. Log into Workato: Start by logging into your Workato account.
  2. Create a new recipe: Workato uses “recipes” to automate workflows. Create a new recipe specifically for integrating Zendesk and Salesforce.

Step 2: Connecting Zendesk and Salesforce to Workato

Establish connections to both platforms:

1. Connect Zendesk to Workato

  • Navigate to the Apps section in Workato.
  • Choose Zendesk and enter your Zendesk credentials to establish a connection.

2. Connect Salesforce to Workato

  • Similarly, add Salesforce by selecting it from the Apps list.
  • Authenticate your Salesforce account to authorize the connection.

Step 3: Configuring the Integration

Now, configure the integration to suit your business needs:

1. Define triggers and actions

  • Decide on the triggers (e.g., a new ticket in Zendesk) and corresponding actions (e.g., create or update a record in Salesforce).
  • Consider common scenarios in your customer support and sales process that would benefit from automation.

2. Map data fields

  • Carefully map corresponding data fields between Zendesk and Salesforce—for example, link Zendesk ticket IDs to Salesforce case numbers.
  • Ensure that the data mapping aligns with your operational workflow.

Step 4: Testing and Deployment

Finally, test and deploy your integration:

1. Test the recipe

  • Perform tests to ensure the integration works as intended. Check for data accuracy and trigger-action functionality.
  • Resolve errors or issues that arise during testing.

2. Deploy the recipe

  • Once the integration functions correctly, deploy the recipe.
  • Monitor the integration for a while to ensure everything runs smoothly.

Step 5: Optimization and Maintenance

After deploying, consider the following:

1. Monitor integration performance

  • Regularly check the integration to ensure it continues to function as expected.
  • Look for any errors or data mismatches that might occur.

2. Optimize the workflow

  • Optimize the recipe based on feedback and performance to suit your operational needs better.
  • Add additional triggers or actions as your business evolves.

Practical Examples to Try

Let’s look at some practical examples you can follow:

  • Example 1: Syncing Zendesk tickets to Salesforce. Create a recipe that automatically creates a Salesforce case every time a new ticket is generated in Zendesk.
  • Example 2: Updating Salesforce records. Configure a recipe to update a customer’s Salesforce record when a ticket is resolved in Zendesk.

You can check some of the example integrations we have created here.

Zendesk Salesforce integration using Workato can revolutionize how you handle customer relationships and support. Following the steps outlined in this post, you can seamlessly sync data between these platforms, enhancing efficiency and providing a better customer experience.

Remember, successful integration comes from careful planning and testing. Once set up, you’ll find that the synergy between Zendesk and Salesforce can significantly improve your customer engagement strategies.

This post was written by Juan Reyes, an entrepreneur, skilled engineer, and mental health champion. Juan has had the opportunity to work with some of the most prominent players in mobile development, web development, and e-commerce in Japan and the US.